The fourth annual Female World Sport School Challenge (FWSSC), hosted by St. Mary’s Academy (SMA), takes place at the MTS Iceplex from March 10-13, 2016. Games begin at 8:15 a.m. on Thursday, March 10 and conclude with the Gold Medal game on Sunday, March 13 at 1:30 p.m.
This year’s tournament brings together ten Sport School teams from across North America. Three local teams in the Challenge are Balmoral Hall Blazers, Shaftesbury Titans and host St. Mary’s Academy Flames. They are joined by defending Champions Pursuit of Excellence from Kelowna, BC, Banff Hockey Academy Bruins from Banff, AB, Notre Dame Hounds from Wilcox, SK, Rothesay Netherwood Riverhawks from Rothesay, NB, Shattuck-St. Mary’s Sabres U-19 from Faribault, MN, St. Francis Xavier Northern Alberta Xtreme from Edmonton, AB and the Vancouver Hockey Academy Greyhounds from Vancouver, BC.
“In the past three years the FWSSC has attracted a lot of attention from teams, scouts and fans and we’re pleased that the tournament has expanded by two teams this year, and has extended beyond Canadian borders with our first American team, the Shattuck-St. Mary’s Sabres,” says Larry Bumstead, Head Coach of the SMA Flames Prep team and FWSSC Steering Committee member. He goes on to say “This tournament is an important venue for elite female players to compete in front of scouts from Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) and National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) post-secondary institutions. Athletes get scouted at this tournament and it opens doors for them to attend and play hockey at major Universities across North America.”
“Hockey Canada has always been a proud supporter of the Female World Sport Challenge since its initial event in 2013 and we are really excited for another great edition of this tournament in 2016,” says Pier-Alexandre Poulin, Hockey Canada, Manager of School Programs. He goes on to say “The FWSSC has helped female players in the past to reach the next level whether it is CIS, NCAA or on our National Team. The players competing are reaching for excellence on and off the ice and will grow to be role models in our society.”
Tickets for the tournament are available at the door of the MTS Iceplex. Tournament passes are $25 and individual game tickets are $5 (children 12 and under free).
In addition to exciting hockey action, the tournament also features a banquet at the Victoria Inn on Saturday, March 12 where Dwayne Gylywoychuk, Head Coach of Canada’s National Women’s Development Team, is the keynote speaker. Master of ceremonies for the event is CBC Video Journalist & Host, and SMA alumna, Jill Coubrough. Banquet tickets are $75 each and available from www.fwssc.ca.
The FWSSC is in its fourth consecutive year with ownership of the tournament transferred from Hockey Canada to St. Mary’s Academy two years ago. Hockey Canada developed the FWSSC to foster its commitment to sport schools and to give players attending sport schools the chance to compete at a higher level.
The FWSSC recognizes RBC as their presenting sponsor for the event. Friday, March 11 is RBC Game Night featuring RBC’s “Score to Win” contest which takes place during the St. Mary’s Academy Flames vs. Balmoral Hall Blazers game at 7:45 p.m. Spectators of the game who are 18 years of age and older can register for a chance to shoot to win a $10,000 prize.